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myraptattention
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i'm attracted to my therapist of over a year, and i have a feeling he's into me, too. how do i know if its real and not just my "crazy"? i know it can't be pursued (plus, he's married), but i need to know if i'm just imagining things or not. i have had problems in the past with seeing more in relationships than is really there, as well as boundary issues. i've been called borderline and bipolar, alternately. i'm not sure i fit either, but i do know that i've made a lot of progress over the last couple of years. so, i'm 80% sure i'm not just seeing things. i've thought about changing therapists, but i feel like i would be running away from the situation. besides, i really trust him and have a hard time with new counselors. i know one thing for certain: i cannot tell him. how do i figure out what's really going on?

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You say you cannot tell him, but I wonder if this may be part of the problem? As a counselor, wouldn't it be his job to help you sort out the exact issues/feelings/questions you are facing? By holding this in and not dealing with it, are you perhaps exacerbating the problem because, instead of getting the facts and dealing with them openly, your mind continues to wonder about what everything means? My suggestion would be to find a way to broach the subject in session and discuss it openly. Should he rebuke you (which I doubt!) then perhaps it is time to find another counselor. But, if he has been so effective in his therapy with you that you feel 80% improved, I would think he would continue to be effective for you no matter the issue!

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i think i would lose him if i told him. isn't that sick? how could he really mean so much to me? its his JOB to "love" me. or more precisely, to show me how to love myself.

i'm sure he would be professional and be helpfully objective. it is me who might end therapy over this. i would feel so embarrassed and foolish; pathetic, really. i feel that way now, when i let myself linger over the idea in session.

i don't want to feel shamed about affection. i do want to be honest. i think you're right... i have to talk to him about this. maybe indirectly, at the very least. as much as i don't want to see it, i think this is part of a bigger problem. i don't want to know that things about us aren't special. that really scares me, like maybe i don't have the hold on reality that i think i do.

thanks for your advice.

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi my raptattention,

First, I agree with lifeless about the importance of talking to your therapist about the issue of your attraction. I am guessing, educated guess wise, is that you feel humiliated about broaching the subject with him and that you have learned to expect rejection and therefore expect him to stop the therapy.

It is important for you to talk to him about this otherwise there will be no end to the secrets and the information that you will keep from him. That results in a "stalled psychotherapy."

By the way, if for some strange reason, he does stop the therapy then he is the completely wrong therapist for you to see anyway. Also, if he tells you that he wants a romantic relationship with you, once again, he is the wrong therapist.

If you truly trust him as your therapist you need to talk to him. If he responds in either of the two ways I mentioned, run the other way.

Allan

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i made a last minute appointment with him today to talk about another, more consuming, relationship i'm in with someone who basically will never be able to give me what i need. this person is someone i've come to love very much, but tells me he does not love me, nor will he ever, because he thinks he is biologically unable to love others. i talked to my therapist about moving past this thing which simply drains me, and how i've known all along that this 'friend' is totally emotionally unavailable, and that i choose these situations because they're somehow safe to me.

so, finally letting myself consider that this is all the same problem, i came out with it. i was absolutely terrified that he was going to reject me, or maybe worse, feel sorry for me. i don't think either things happened.

he was very encouraging that this is a good thing, that it means i'm in the direction of recognizing what i truly need and deserve in relationships. i'm learning to see what is growth and what keeps me in circles.

i felt much better afterwards. i think it had been bothering me for longer than i'd wanted to admit. i think things might change now, but it will be okay. maybe even better.

thanks for telling me to talk to him. i'm glad i did.

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Guest ASchwartz

Hi myraptattention,

Congratulations to you on having the courage to speak to your therapist about something that was so difficult. I have always maintained that psychotherapy is difficult and sometime, very difficult. This issue will come up again in your therapy but, hopefully, it will be less scary for you.

Allan:)

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